DALLAS - The Dallas Mavericks found themselves involved in an international headline on Friday when the were connected in print to Real Madrid guard Facundo Campazzo. What's the true Mavs interest level? And what's the Campazzo scouting report?
DallasBasketball.com has the scoop.
An NBA source tells DBcom that Dallas' interest level in the 29-year-old Argentinian is "low to moderate'' - and we're quick to point out that under GM Donnie Nelson, the Mavs are always in contact with foreign prospects.
Campazzo is 5-11 and 194 pounds and Mavs insiders see his NBA comp as being J.J. Barea - a tough, afraid-of-nothing player. It is Croatian outlet Crosarka that first connected some dots here, and it is true that the Mavs know the player from his time in Argentina ... and now that he's point guard for Real Madrid? Well, that track record is well-known, as he has experience playing with former and current Mavericks such as Luka Doncic, Salah Mejri and Nico Brussino.
In 54 games in Euroleague and Liga ACB combined, Campazzo averaged 10.3 points per game, 6.4 assists per game, 2.4 rebounds per game, 1.3 steals per game, and just 2.2 turnovers per game on 41-percent shooting and 37.5-percent from 3 with a stellar 86.5 percent from the free-throw line.
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The immediate area that sticks out for Campazzo is his passing ability. His vision is among the top in the world, combined with an innate ability to know when to make the pass. Campazzo is a floor general who rarely makes limited mistakes - six assists per game on average between Euroleague and the Liga ACB to just over two turnovers per game this year. Campazzo’s patience and IQ make him one of Europe’s best passers. He can see the floor incredibly well despite his size, and is proficient in the pick-and-roll, making him virtually flawless as a playmaker - at his level of competition.
Unfortunately, Campazzo falls short in several other key areas: finishing at the rim, defense, and 3-point shooting consistency. While Campazzo shot 39.5 percent in Liga ACB this season, he shot 33 percent last season, 34 percent in 2017-18, 32 percent in 2016-17 and 31 percent in 2015-16.
While there are promising signs from strong percentages in international competition, where he shot 35-percent-plus from 3 in two of the last three Euroleague competitions and in the 2019 FIBA World Cup ... he still needs to be more consistent across the board.
Furthermore, Campazzo’s shot form is not ideal for an undersized guard: a push shot with a low release point. The best case scenario for Campazzo as a shooter is for defenders to not sag off of him with the ball, which would heavily reduce his high level passing.
Campazzo’s fit in Dallas is a bit awkward - should the Mavs' "low to moderate'' interest heat up - but it can work. The Mavs are not in a dire need for a point guard, despite Barea’s age and Jalen Brunson’s lingering injury. However, the Mavs rank 19th in assist percentage - meaning percentage of field goals to come from an assist - in the NBA. While the Mavs do not need a primary playmaker to share the ball with Luka, they could use one to run the bench unit as a main ball-handler.
The bidding on Campazzo reportedly could include the San Antonio Spurs, and our understanding is that the "bidding'' is pricy; the player's buyout may be too rich to bother with. But if the Mavs and Spurs do eventually give chase? It could comes down to a clash of storylines: Will the Spurs’ history of Argentinian success in Manu Ginobili outweigh Luka Doncic’s connection to Campazzo?